Talking to a friend, speaking on the telephone, watching a movie and many other everyday activities can become frustratingly difficult when you can't hear well. Fortunately, your ear, nose, and throat doctors (ENTs) at West Coast Ear, Nose, and Throat in Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, Camarillo, CA, offer treatments that may improve your hearing loss symptoms.
What causes hearing loss?
Hearing loss can occur for many reasons, including:
- Earwax buildup
- Fluid in your ear due to an ear infection
- Exposure to loud noises
- A ruptured eardrum
- Bone or eardrum abnormalities
- Illnesses or medication side effects
- Otosclerosis, a condition that happens due to an overgrowth of bones in the middle ear
- A benign (non-cancerous) tumor on the nerve that travels from your brain to your inner ear
- Meniere's disease, an inner ear disorder that causes dizziness, hearing loss, and ringing in the ears
What can be done about hearing loss?
During your visit to the Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, or Camarillo ENT office, your doctor will perform a thorough examination and review your symptoms and medical history.
Hearing loss treatment will depend on your diagnosis. If your hearing problem is caused by wax buildup or an ear infection, removing the wax or treating the infection with antibiotics and decongestants will likely improve your hearing. Tubes that drain the ears can be helpful if fluid buildup in the ears is a chronic problem. In some cases, surgery might be needed to treat hearing loss caused by bone or nerve issues.
A hearing aid may be a good option if hearing loss is due to damaged hair cells in the inner ear. Hair cell damage can occur due to aging, diseases, exposure to loud noises, or medication side effects. Hearing aids decrease background noise and amplify sounds, improving your ability to follow a conversation or hear the dialogue over the music at the movie theater.
Have you noticed a change in your hearing? Your Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Oxnard, and Camarillo, CA, ENTs at West Coast Ear, Nose, and Throat can determine the source of your hearing loss and recommend treatment options.
You can reach the doctors by calling (805) 379-9646 for the Thousand Oaks office, (805) 527-7320 for the Simi Valley office, (805) 983-0395 for the Oxnard office, or (805) 484-5929 for the Camarillo office.
Would you recognize the warning signs of an ear infection, especially in your children?
While anyone can develop an ear infection, our Thousand Oaks, CA, ENT doctors often treat young children the most. Middle ear infections tend to be the most common childhood infection that often brings them into our office for treatment. It’s important to know the signs and symptoms of an ear infection, particularly in young children, so you can seek immediate care when needed.
Common signs of a middle ear infection in children include,
- Ear pain
- Fullness or pressure in the ear
Of course, while older children can vocalize what they are feeling, babies and toddlers cannot. Newborns and little ones may simply become clingy or fussier. They may also cry whenever you place them down for a nap or to go to sleep. Children with ear infections may wake up throughout the night because of the pain. Children may also pull at the affected ear.
If your child is displaying these symptoms suddenly, your child could have an ear infection and it’s a good idea to call our Thousand Oaks, CA, otolaryngologist to determine what steps to take next.
Will an ear infection go away on its own?
In many cases, ear infections will go away without treatment. Of course, it’s still a good idea to visit your ENT doctor, who can provide solutions to help your child manage their pain while the infection clears up. In some cases, antibiotics may be necessary.
If your child is prone to ear infections you may wish to talk with our team about other strategies to lessen the chances for future ear infections, as recurring infections could impact their hearing or cause other complications.
When should I see an otolaryngologist?
It’s a good idea to visit our ENT team if your child is experiencing any of these symptoms,
- A fever of 102 F or higher
- Symptoms that are only getting worse
- Trouble hearing
- Fluid or pus draining from the ear
Of course, if you or your child’s symptoms are severe it’s always a good idea to play it safe and see a doctor. Our team can easily examine the infection and determine whether antibiotics are needed.
West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat provides comprehensive, gentle and caring ear, nose and throat care to patients of all ages living in and around Thousand Oaks, Simi, Oxnard and Camarillo, CA. If you or your little one is experiencing symptoms of an ear infection and you want to know whether you should come in for a checkup, call us today. Call our Thousand Oaks, CA, office at (805) 379-9646, Simi Valley, CA, office at (805) 527-7320, Oxnard, CA, office at (805) 983-0395, or our Camarillo, CA, office at (805) 484-5929.
Could you benefit from a visit to the ENT doctors at West Coast Ear, Nose, Throat in Simi Valley, Oxnard, Camarillo, and Thousand Oaks, CA? The doctors treat a variety of conditions and illnesses ranging from sinusitis to sleep apnea to hearing loss.
Make an ENT appointment if you have these symptoms
Ear, nose, and throat doctors treat illnesses and conditions that affect the throat, larynx (voice box), nose, sinuses, ears, and mouth. Call the Simi Valley, Oxnard, Camarillo, and Thousand Oaks, CA, ENT office if you're concerned about:
- Chronic Sinusitis: If you've had sinusitis symptoms for three months or longer or have frequent bouts of sinusitis, it's a good idea to see the ENT. Your doctor can offer medications or procedures that ease nasal congestion, pain, headaches, pressure, and other sinusitis symptoms.
- A Sore Throat That Won't Go Away: A sore throat often accompanies a viral infection and usually gets better on its own. Let your ENT know if your sore throat lasts longer than a week or keeps coming back.
- Frequent Nosebleeds: When nosebleeds happen often, your ENT can diagnose the cause of the problem and offer helpful treatments.
- Trouble Hearing: Have you been having trouble hearing lately? Hearing issues can be caused by impacted ear wax, age-related changes in your ear, ear infections, head injuries, exposure to loud noises, and certain diseases.
- Dizziness and Vertigo: Dizziness or vertigo can be related to inner ear issues. Your ENT offers treatments that will prevent or reduce bouts of dizziness or vertigo.
- Ear Infections: Ear infections can happen at any age, although they're particularly common in children.
- Allergies: ENTs can help you deal with sneezing, congestion, coughing, itchy eyes, and other allergy symptoms.
- Voice Changes: Make an appointment with your ENT if laryngitis, hoarseness, or other voice changes last more than a few weeks.
- Loud Snoring and Daytime Drowsiness: These symptoms may be caused by sleep apnea, a dangerous condition that causes short breathing pauses throughout the night. Treatment can help you avoid heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and other health conditions related to sleep apnea.
- Other Issues: It's also important to see your ENT if you have trouble swallowing, notice a lump on your neck, or have frequent tonsillitis or adenoiditis.
Is it time for a visit to your Simi Valley, Oxnard, Camarillo, and Thousand Oaks, CA, ENTs? Schedule an appointment by calling (805) 379-9646 for the Thousand Oaks office, (805) 527-7320 for the Simi Valley office, (805) 983-0395 for the Oxnard office, or (805) 484-5929 for the Camarillo office.
Hearing loss comes in varying degrees and different types. It could be total or partial, gradual or sudden, permanent or temporary, and it could implant just one or both of your ears. It is likewise categorized based on which specific part of the hearing or auditory system is affected.
If you suspect that you’ve developed hearing loss, consult with your ENT doctor in Thousand Oaks, CA, Simi Valley, CA, Oxnard, CA, or Camarillo, CA, office here at West Coast ENT Head & Neck Surgery. Meanwhile, here are common hearing loss warning signs you should know about.
Warnings Signs of Hearing Loss to Watch Out For
In most cases, hearing loss isn’t immediately realized by the affected individual. It’s typically the family members or close friends that notice the hearing difficulties. For example, they might complain that you constantly ask them to say things that they’ve just said or that you listen to music or watch videos too loud. You may also be unaware of your phone or the doorbell ringing when others can hear them perfectly.
While each individual will experience hearing loss symptoms differently, the most common warning signs usually include the following:
- Frequent requests for clarification or repetition.
- Not being able to hear other people fully and clearly. It might seem to you that they’re mumbling, or you might find that you don’t hear the entire conversation.
- Needing to stare at someone speaking so that you can understand what they’re saying more easily.
- Feeling fatigued after the day’s end because of straining to hear people and things.
- Pretending that you heard what someone just said for fear of having to ask what they’ve just said.
- Withdrawing from social events to avoid conversing in noisy environments.
Diagnosing Hearing Loss
While hearing loss is actually common in older individuals, especially those older than 65 years old, it’s usually underdiagnosed, according to the Hearing Loss Association of America. Losing your hearing could immensely impact your quality of life. So the moment you suspect you’re losing your hearing, even if you’re not entirely certain, visit your ENT doctor in our Simi Valley, CA, Oxnard, CA, Camarillo, CA, or Thousand Oaks, CA, office. Hearing loss can be diagnosed accurately using various tests.
Think You May Have Hearing Loss? Call Us
Arrange an assessment here at West Coast ENT Head & Neck Surgery. Call our Thousand Oaks, CA, office at (805) 379-9646, Simi Valley, CA, office at (805) 527-7320, Oxnard, CA, office at (805) 983-0395, or our Camarillo, CA, office at (805) 484-5929.
Allergies are abnormal responses of the immune system against typically harmless substances known as allergens. The individual’s body responds to these allergens and ultimately produce common allergy symptoms like rashes, runny or stuffy nose, swelling, and/or sneezing. The most common allergy type we treat here at West Coast ENT Head & Neck Surgery in our Thousand Oaks, CA, Simi Valley, CA, Oxnard, CA, and Camarillo, CA, locations is allergic rhinitis. Find out more about it below.
What Exactly is Allergic Rhinitis?
Symptoms of allergic rhinitis stem from irritation and inflammation of the nose due to contact with allergens and other irritants, such as the following:
- Pollutants and chemicals in the air
- Pet dander
- Cigarette smoke
- Strong smells or fumes
- Changes in the weather and temperature
- A respiratory tract infection
When an allergic individual breathes in these allergens and irritants, they enter the nose and your body reacts by releasing histamine. This chemical then causes allergic rhinitis symptoms.
Treating Allergic Rhinitis
Essentially, you should avoid exposing yourself to your specific allergy triggers. To ease mild symptoms, you can turn to saline rinses or sprays and OTC antihistamine and allergy medications. If these fail to properly manage your allergy symptoms, you should seek help from your ENT doctor in our Thousand Oaks, CA, Simi Valley, CA, Oxnard, CA, or Camarillo, CA, office for more potent allergy treatments.
These treatments could include more potent antihistamines and oral decongestants as well as antileukotrienes. Your prescribed medications need to be taken as directed to ensure effectiveness and avoid adverse effects. If these still fail to work, your ENT doctor might recommend immunotherapy or allergy shots. When determining the medications that will best suit your case, the following factors will be considered:
- Your specific symptoms
- The intensity or severity of your symptoms
- Medications you’ve used or are currently taking
- Possible side effects
- Will you need to take the medication intermittently or daily?
Managing allergic rhinitis, or any kind of allergy could be challenging. It might seem like a daunting task to manage a treatment plan and avoid your specific triggers. However, by having a communicative and collaborative relationship with your ENT doctor, you could develop and follow a sustainable treatment plan.
For Allergy Relief, We Can Help
Book a visit here at West Coast ENT Head & Neck Surgery by calling our Thousand Oaks, CA, office at (805) 379-9646, Simi Valley, CA, office at (805) 527-7320, Oxnard, CA, office at (805) 983-0395, or Camarillo, CA, office at (805) 484-5929.
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